How our new domain names will work
Our new domains for Wales are coming this September and we are publishing the rules and processes for .cymru and .wales today. We ran a three-month consultation on our proposals and we believe that the decisions we have made will create a strong policy framework for .cymru and .wales to develop and grow.
We have our own distinctive identity and culture in Wales, and of course our own language. We have worked closely with the Welsh Government every step of the way to ensure that these new domains are good for Welsh businesses, good for Wales and support the Welsh language online. So we are delighted to announce that not only will there be a restricted launch phase that will benefit businesses active in the Welsh market before the domains are opened up to everyone, but in a unique approach that has been developed especially for .cymru and .wales, both domain spaces will allow the registration of names that use the diacritic marks used in the Welsh language.
If you’re a holder of a trademark, you should act now to give yourself the best possible chance to secure the corresponding domain name, by submitting it to the Trademark Clearing House before the end of July. Everything you need to know about the trade mark process is here - http://trademark-clearinghouse.com. Don’t worry if you don’t have a trademark though – if you are a business operating in Wales, there will be a further opportunity to secure domain names that match your business name or brand. To register your interest, click here - http://ourhomeonline.wales/sign-up-for-updates
We would like to thank everyone who responded and who helped us to develop our proposals. We have published an analysis of the responses we received and a policy statement setting out our conclusions following the December 2012 consultation.
Key policy points for .cymru and .wales:
- Domain Resellers who sell the domain names to the public will be required to stock both .wales and .cymru domain names providing equal status to Wales’s two languages and the two domain names. There will be a restricted launch phase that will benefit businesses active in the Welsh market before the domains are opened up on a first come, first served basis.
- Individuals, companies and organisations will be able to choose to register their domain name in either .cymru or .wales or both.
- An innovative partnership has been set up with Gwynedd Council’s Galw Gwynedd to offer bilingual call centre support to Welsh and English speaking callers. Nominet will also publish a voluntary Welsh Language Scheme.
- In a unique approach that we have developed especially for these domains, both domain spaces will allow the registration of names that use the diacritic marks used in the Welsh language to mirror non-diacritic domain names.
- For the full policy go to http://ourhomeonline.wales/about-us/policy
Commenting on the announcement, Ieuan Evans, Chair of the Nominet Wales Advisory Group said: “The new .cymru and .wales domains are an exciting opportunity for Wales to reach its full potential online by creating a platform for Brand Wales to become recognised worldwide. We are absolutely committed to making these domains work for everyone in Wales and that they empower people to create and use Welsh language content.”
Jo Golley, leading Nominet’s Wales team says, “Publication of our policy document is the next step in our drive to give Wales an exciting new online platform on which to build the Welsh brand. Having worked for over two years with the Welsh Government and key Welsh businesses and organisations we are confident that we are now well placed to deliver domains which are more relevant to Wales.
“Today we have further been able to clarify our commitment to the Welsh language. The extensive technical measures we have put in place to allow diacritic marks to be used have been taken with the full intent of enabling people to use the range and subtlety of the Welsh language online. These important steps will enable a massive increase in Welsh language domain names on the internet.”
For more details about the full .cymru .wales programme go to http://ourhomeonline.wales